Poet

All Terrain Jeep

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Good Morning or Good Afternoon or Good Evening…
(depending on where you are in the world)*smile*

I have been enjoying my stay in S.Africa for the past 2 1/2 weeks. My travels have taken me to Johannesburg, Capetown and Pretoria. While I have been enjoying each city I have also been carrying a book with me that I started reading before I left the U.S called,”Instincts,” by Bishop T.D Jakes. Between tours, shopping, eating,etc., I have been blown away by the points expressed in each chapter making it hard to put down. I will read…then re-read a sentence over and over again because of how hard it hit home…”My home”…meaning My own personal life! I love to be challenged and the feeling of settling has always been a problem for me because my desire to be better means more to me than my comfort!

So…I am in Chapter 6 and there is a subtitle called,”Driving the Jeep.”

What is so ironic is Bishop is talking about a visit he made to S.Africa and his first Safari experience! So, I am in S.Africa, in a restaurant reading this chapter…and thinking about my first Safari experience here in S.Africa in July 2013. Here is what he said:

“As you venture into new jungles of opportunity the people riding with you make a huge difference in your ability to move forward over rough terrain. While on my Safari in South Africa, I appreciated the rugged power and sturdy frame of our carrier vehicle, a jeep clearly designed for off-road excursions.It adapted to the muddy roads and rocky hills without slowing down. Clearly, it was built for survival under stress.

In order to survive, we must be as rugged and determined as this Jeep navigating through the jungle. We must be willing to make hard choices and accept temporary solutions. And we must also be willing to mobilize those around us to head in the same direction as our destiny. No matter how resourceful, creative,or industrious we may be, without others on our team,we will only Idle on our ideas instead of gaining traction towards interaction!”

One of my favorite sayings is,”God did not create us to be Islands!” And the fact of the matter is no one that is considered to be “great, successful, etc,” did not get where they are with no support. It truly takes a team to make a vision come to pass. Anyone who is currently pursuing a vision also knows that this is a process. This process is parallel to the stress of the vision and moving it along.

I have been performing spoken word poetry for 13 years and counting. I have seen the face of my team change over the years for various reasons. What this process has taught me is even though it becomes difficult at times, I can’t do everything I desire to do with poetry ALONE. I love the input of my team and I work hard at trying to always have a teachable spirit! I view it the same way as going to church to worship with others verses watching service online at home or somewhere that is not with other people. There is something that happens in that atmosphere with other believers that nurtures your spirit differently than being alone. It is not the same.

Another point I ponder as well. Life truly is filled with relationships on all levels and because you can not escape that, it is important to learn how to manage them. Why? Because you can’t do LIFE without them. And for the people you work closely with? Assess if they are the “tires” on your jeep helping to navigate the vision through the smooth and rough terrains of life or are they added weight in your jeep causing it to slow down or even breakdown? Think about it…

I would love to hear your thoughts! Leave me a comment and don’t forget to Stay in touch! Connect with me on Twitter @chiccybaritone and Facebook at Chiccy Baritone ~ Poet

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The Many Faces of a Mother (In honor of Mother’s Day on May 11, 2014)

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The Many Faces of a Mother

In honor of Mother’s Day on Sunday, May 11, 2014, I felt obligated to write a special blog post to every man and woman for this special holiday. Honoring the woman who gave birth to you or to the woman who didn’t birth you biologically but she raised you and she is the only woman who YOU call mom. How about the step mom who stood in the gap and said, “Yes,” when it was time to take care of you because of a “life” circumstance? (am I getting warm?lol) Or, how about a woman who has no blood relation to you but she “feels” like mom because you never met your mom? Please allow me to take a moment to speak to your heart as I speak to mine.

You see, my mom died on Tuesday, April 26, 2011 and I remember it like it was yesterday. As painful as that memory was, I recorded that day in my journal so that I will never forget it because even through my pain at the time it was written, I knew that I would want to go back and recall the details of my emotions and my mindset at the age of 33. Another interesting fact; I was the last one to talk to her the night before she passed through a phone conversation where my mom was being my mom…consoling me through words of comfort because of a bad breakup and reassuring me of who I am, boldly proclaiming that the right one will come along. The conversation was long and ended like all conversations end with my mom,”I Love You”…I miss those talks so much…

But let me tell you how amazing God is when it comes to us, his children. Prior to my mom passing, I have been blessed with some wonderful friendships ranging in age from women who are around my age to women who are around the age of my mom or older. Some, not all, have taken on the role unconsciously as my “mother” in so many ways. They have become the many faces to a mother and I believe that God knows who to send and when to send them to your life. They help ease the pain of that void and they are assigned and appointed to “Mother” YOU!

Embrace it

These women have made a “love decision” to be there for you and hopefully if it is a situation where your mom is no longer living, they help to keep her memories alive!

Roles in life will become interchangeable as people live and die, but one thing is for sure, you are not ALONE! [John 14:18(NIV) “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.”]

That’s right, you are not alone…you have GOD and you have that woman who has the title of “Mom”. Happy Mother’s Day! ~Much Love…Chiccy Baritone

Who is Chiccy Baritone?

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Well HELLO!

I’m a newbie….to Blogging…and I am excited…ready….and smiling as I type because this has been a long time coming and I am finally posting my very first BLOG! *insert claps here*

So, Let me introduce myself…my name is Charlene Evans….but Chiccy Baritone is my alias…my alter ego that holds a pretty solid residency in the “right side” of my brain. She is a lot like Charlene during the day, well, because she has to be…she is a professional who works as an engineer but she is also a POET…Yes, I’m a POET:-)

Its a long story but I have a short version. In high school, back in the early 90’s, I was in the Miss Spring Valley Pageant and as my talent I did a monologue called,”Black Love” by Gwendolyn Brooks and I loved it. I challenged myself to read and memorize this poem and received a very surprising response from the audience that made me feel like I won the pageant. I went on to college where I begin to write poetry but kept it in a notebook and decided my senior year to visit an open mic and opened my personal notebook to the public. The response was unbelievable…the crowd applaud and cheered and as I went back to my seat, I was blown away. To me, these poems were my place to vent, my mental place of therapy and extremely personal. To the crowd, I was an artist..and they treated me that way but it took me a while to “get that”.

This was also a couple of years after the release of the movie “Love Jones” starring Nia Long and Lorenz Tate..the love story of a poet and photographer. I fell in LOVE with both forms of Art, in that order, but years apart from each other. So for now, the discovery of this gift from God called poetry, one that I grew more into as my personal relationship with Christ grew, was revealed and ready to come out and I was ready to share!

Fast forward to 2001, after graduating from South Carolina State University, I moved to Greenville, SC . I performed at an open mic at the Crown Plaza Hotel and from that point on I have been performing poetry all over the U.S. I continue to have a “hunger” for poetry and allowing myself to being introduced to so many avenues to express what I consider one of the greatest forms of self-expression…world outreach…and people progression. Poetry is more than a mic, a stage and words; it changes lives and challenges the human mind and heart.

My quest is to open up this world to you through blogging and sharing my thoughts beyond the limited characters of social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook. So “Follow me” here and hopefully something that I say you will “Like”….(did you catch that? *smile*) and it will inspire you because the beauty of creating a form of art in words is that what you say can mean something totally different to you, the reader, than it did to the writer and the exchange of sharing becomes inspiration recycled….Yes!!!

So, THANK YOU for taking out the time to read my first BLOG…my next blog will be May 2nd…every two weeks on a Friday…known as Freelance Friday’s with Chiccy Baritone…Welcome Aboard!